UPSTARTS Awards hosted its first-ever APAC Retail Startup hybrid pitch event in collaboration with Startup&Angels in Singapore on the 7th of July. This live pitch hybrid event, which was attended by an audience of 130+ in Singapore and around Asia, was the first of the UPSTARTS Awards community activations, bringing together five Asian retail startups who pitched live to a panel of judges.
Among which, Fairmart, a retail tech startup that supports Singaporean local independent retailers by helping stores automatically digitise all their products using a smart barcode scanner and enable them for online search, stood out from their competitors and particularly caught the attention of the judges. The pitch, led by Jan Gasparic, Co-founder and CEO of Fairmart, showcased tremendous potential, and was crowned winner at the competition.
Having caught up with Jan earlier this year, he showed great determination in the development of Fairmart on an ambitious note – “Fairmart is the next wave where we take all the tools that the big players have, and make them available to every local and neighbourhood store out there.” Now having the title of APAC Retail Startup Pitch Winner under their belt, Fairmart is in the hopes of achieving another milestone – competing in the UPSTARTS Awards.
Playing a key role in a new wave of digitisation in the retail sphere, Fairmart made D2C e-commerce more accessible to independent retailers all across Asia. Retail in Asia looked into Double One, Excellent Spirit and Freshie, which are all long term clients of Fairmart – through a combination of IoT and SEO, they have explored new ways to engage customers while generating more sales.
Double One Minimart is a Singaporean neighbourhood supermarket with over 3,500 SKUs. They have a strong local customer base but face competition from a chain supermarket that opened up in the neighbourhood.
They differentiate themselves from their competitors with a unique selection of products. Through Fairmart’s solution, Double One is able to list all their 3,500+ SKUs on Google quickly, allowing neighbourhood shoppers to find them online. In the first month of using Fairmart, Double One saw a 300% increase in inquiries over the phone as shoppers were not aware that the store carried the products they were previously looking for.
Excellent Spirit is a neighbourhood wine and craft beer store near Farrer Road in Singapore. They carry a broad selection of mid-range wines, beers and liquors. Excellent Spirit started using Fairmart about a month prior to a Covid-19 surge that greatly diminished foot traffic to the store.
Many of their existing customers still wanted to purchase from them but could not visit the store. By deploying Fairmart, Excellent Spirit was able to quickly digitise all their products and serve their customers online. As the pandemic receded, most shoppers mixed their purchasing habits depending on their specific situations during the day. By offering an omni-channel retail experience, Excellent Spirit is able to now serve their customers regardless of whether it is in-store or online.
Freshie is a local supermarket in Singapore with approximately 2,000 SKUs, spanning international and local CPG brands. Business is run by a small team of 5 and located in the busy thoroughfare of Jalan Besar.
The team uses Fairmart’s barcode scanner to automatically list all their products online. In order to maximise their local audience, Freshie uses Fairmart to automatically run Google Shopping campaigns for the products they have in store, and geo-target them to the neighbourhood.
Through this localised approach, Freshie is able to achieve ROAS of 5.8x VS industry average of 2.8x. Predictable and clear ROI on their ad spend allows the Freshie team to make better decisions regarding the ROI they get for their ads. Furthermore, to list all their 2,000 products manually would have taken the team over 150 hours of data entry, time a small team like theirs simply does not have.
UPSTARTS entry submissions opened on 1st June 2022 and will be closed on 15th August 2022. Winners will be selected by leaders and experts across brand, retail and startup sectors, more requirements and key dates here.
Asian Retail Startups interested in participating in the UPSTARTS awards can find more information here.